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Gully hosts end of year AITC party

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Brighton & Hove Albion stars Uwe Hünemeier and Oliver Norwood were among the guests at an end of year party thrown by Albion in the Community (AITC).

AITC runs an array of projects throughout Sussex and in the last year alone the charity engaged with more than 36,000 people.

One of its most-popular schemes is Gully’s Days Out which provides fun days out for young people and adults with additional needs. Supported by American Express®, Gully’s Days Out has more than 500 members and during 2016 visited a host of local attractions. Staff from American Express volunteer on each trip to support members.

To celebrate the end of the year AITC and American Express organised a party at the Amex Stadium which was attended by more than 100 members and their families.

Albion first team players Hünemeier and Norwood took time out of their busy schedule to attend the event, posing for photographs and signing autographs.

Elsewhere at the event, Gully’s Days Out members were given the chance to meet an array of animals, including guinea pigs, rabbits, mice, hedgehogs and a chinchilla.

There was also face painting, arts and crafts, a photo booth, children’s entertainer and table football as well as party food and an appearance from Gully, the Seagulls’ official mascot.

Paul Brackley, who heads Gully’s Days Out for AITC, was delighted with how the event went and said the charity was looking forward to another successful year of Gully’s Days Out trips.

He said: “It was great to welcome so many of our members and their families to the stadium for our end of year party and having Uwe and Oliver come along made it extra special.

“It was also nice to be able to celebrate with a number of our volunteers from American Express.

“Throughout the year they provide valuable respite to our members’ families or carers while making the trips as enjoyable as possible for the members themselves. Gully’s Days Out really would not be the success it is without American Express and we are hugely grateful for the company’s continued support.”

Local mum Linda McGowan said: “Phoebe loves Gully’s community party and looks forward to it every year. When you have a child with additional needs, going out can be difficult sometimes. On a supported Gully’s Day Out, everyone accepts each other and the volunteers can’t do enough.

“Our family all supports Brighton & Hove Albion so it is good know their charity can support us too.”

AITC is now accepting membership for 2017. For more information call 01273 668590 or email:

For more information on Gully’s Days Out, CLICK HERE.